2008 recipient of the ANCOR FOUNDATION'S national Community Builder Award
1999 recipient of the AAIDD (American Association on intellectual disability) national Full Community Inclusion Award, "For exemplary leadership in supporting individuals with disabilities to become fully participating community members"
Recognized as a state, regional and national leader in providing full community inclusion and converting from traditional services
KFI restructured itself in the following important ways:
established inclusive community supports as an alternative to traditional services;
eliminated all group programs, replacing them with customized community supports;
closed the sheltered workshop and stopped all in-house work in favor of real jobs in the community at minimum wage or greater – individual jobs, not work within an enclave or other group setting;
initiated true supported living with supports ranging from one hour per week to twenty-four hours per day; people live in their own apartments or homes, not KFI owed property
Mentor to five organizations to improve integrated community work through Wisconsin's MIG grant
One of ten organizations identified nationally to serve as a mentor through a federal Department of Labor grant awarded jointly to the Institute for Community Inclusion, University of Massachusetts, Boston and Virginia Commonwealth University (www.t-tap.org)
Reviewed by Pam Walker, Ph.D., Syracuse University as part of her national investigation of promising practices (see ACTING ON A VISION: AGENCY CONVERSION AT KFI at http://thechp.syr.edu/KFI.html)
Part of a three year multi-state federal Department of Labor grant through the Institute for Community Inclusion, University of Massachusetts, Boston (completed)
Wrote successful $375,000 Federal Grant involving four independent regional rehabilitation organizations to provide vocational information, counseling and job experiences to students with specific learning disabilities
Cited by the federally funded Rehabilitation Network as having one of New England's seven exemplary rehabilitation programs.